Are the prestigious colleges "better" than others? I really love physics and I might actually be able to get into a good college for physics (University of Illinois at Urbana) but money is probably going to be an issue for me. I'm also not too fond of leaving all the people I've known my entire life and going somewhere a couple hundred miles from where most of them are going (Kentucky colleges). So I was wondering if U of I is a whole heck-of-alot-better than say University of Louisville in Kentucky. Every single website I come across consistently lists U of I as a very good school for physics and I really haven't seen any mentioning Louisville. So I suppose my question would be if physics programs differ widely from college to college or if they are pretty much the same.